Sheldon Jackson's unbeaten 133 outshone Ruturaj Gaikwad's heroics in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2022 final, as Saurashtra clinched a 5-wicket victory over Maharashtra in Ahmedabad on Friday. The 36-year-old Sheldon Jackson and impressive bowling performance from Chirag Jani, helped Jaydev Unadkat-led side to lift the Vijay Hazare Trophy title for the first time since their title triumph in 2008.
Earlier, Maharashtra skipper and top-order batter Ruturaj Gaikwad (108) continued his sublime form in the competition as he notched up his fourth century in five innings in the current edition of competition. However, Saurashtra bowlers kept the other batters at bay as they finished with 248/9 in 50 overs.
In response, Saurashtra had a flying start with Harvik Desai (50 off 67) and unbeaten Sheldon Jackson (133 off 136) adding 125 runs for the first wicket. Chirag Jani also batted brilliantly towards the end and provided much-needed assistance to Sheldon.
Delighted with the title triumph, Saurashtra skipper Unadkat bowed down to the ground to express his gratitude and appeared emotional. The left-arm speedster finished as the leading wicket-taker in the tournament with 19 scalps.
Post-match, Unadkat credited his players for their superb performance in the high-stake game and specially mentioned Jani (for his all-round performance) along with Jackson (133 off 136).
"We have match-winners and credit goes to all of them. Special mention to Sheldon for the way he batted today. Wasn't in form but the way he batted today shows that he belongs to this level and also the highest level. Chirag Jani has been excellent and if there is one player in the side who deserves to play at the highest level," said Unadkat.
Ruturaj Gaikwad was awarded Player of the Series for his incredible batting throughout the tournament. The 25-year-old right-handed batter added 660 runs in five innings including four centuries. Meanwhile, Sheldon Jackson was awarded the Player of the Match for his incredible knock in the summit clash.